Beach No 56: North Curl Curl (27 January 2019)

If you’ve been following this blog you may be thinking, “Wait a second. Wasn’t your last beach number 54 Newport?” And if you are thinking that – well spotted. Number 55 is North Cronulla. In a couple of weeks, I’m attending a 1st birthday party near Cronulla. That party is on a Sunday and I hope to visit North Cronulla then. It’s cheating, yes, but they are my rules so I can bend them when I wish. Rain showers are predicted for the afternoon but it’s sunny, hot, and humid when I leave home. I’m happy Google has suggested a …

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Beach No 54: Newport (13 January 2019)

I wake to another grey Sunday but when I leave for Newport Beach, the sky has mostly cleared. The #423 bus takes me from King Street (Newtown) to Martin Place. I walk to Wynyard and catch the #B1 bus to the end of that line in Mona Vale. There, I use my 15-minute wait to eat most of the lunch I’ve brought along and then get the #199 bus to Newport Beach. It’s taken me about two hours. On the one hand, that’s a pain in the ass. On the other, straight forward, efficient, clean, and safe public transportation has …

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Narrabeen: Beach No 53 – Around the Lagoon and Other Things on 6 January 2019

On the first Sunday of the year I decided that, regardless of the weather, I would go to Narrabeen Beach – the next beach in my alphabetical list. And that, in going to Narrabeen on the first Sunday of the year, I would set myself up to go to the beach every Sunday for the rest of the summer. It was not to a promising beach day. I set off in a misting rain on the M30 bus from Newtown to Neutral Bay where I transferred to the B1 to Narrabeen. I read The Hate Race, listened to the German …

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Nats Win!! Celebrating the 2018 victories of the Washington Nationals one (mostly) unrelated photo at a time.

For me, watching baseball is an act of simple mindfulness. It consumes my attention, lightly but fully. I’m not thinking of statistics or how likely match ups will play out – I’m just watching. And I love that about it. I love the uncertainty and that the uncertainty lasts until the final out. I also love the arc of the season, the steady accumulation of wins and losses, the way young players blossom and older players fade, the sudden impact of injury and jarring swiftness of trades – of seeing OUR players in another team’s uniform. This photo project – …

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Beach No 52: Mona Vale – A winter solstice beach (23 June 2018)

Since 2010 I’ve been visiting Sydney’s beaches in alphabetical order. I’ve reached number 52: Mona Vale. Replicating a structure I’ve been using in my recent posts from my bicycle trip over Anzac Day Week – I’ve split this post into three sections: my story of visiting the beach – which in this case is an annual review of how life is going, a bit about Mona Vale, and then the practical details of how I got there and where I ate, etc. The Story My first winter solstice beach visit had real substance. I was closing out a year in …

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Bicycle Riding Holiday Around Goulburn: Prologue

After my mid-life gap year, after my foray back into American politics, I came home to Sydney and began looking for work. In time, I got a temp position, which became a permanent position and, with permanence, came paid leave. This is the first paid leave I’ve been eligible for this century, it’s such a novel concept it’s taken me a while to get around to using it for a holiday. During the week of Anzac Day 2018 I wanted to go for a bicycle ride someplace quiet and beautiful. I settled on the area around Goulburn, New South Wales …

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Beach No 51: Milk (Sunday 11 February 2018)

Since 2010 I’ve been visiting Sydney’s beaches in alphabetical order. I’ve reached number 51: Milk. As I hop on my bicycle to ride to Milk Beach at 9:30 am I’m thinking of a recent conversation with a friend about Being more and Doing less. The irony of spending my leisurely bicycle ride through Sydney on a beautiful Sunday morning thinking about how to Be rather than Do isn’t entirely lost on me. But, obviously, I am off in the shrubbery of my mind as I ride through Centennial Park. The road is one way and I ride right past my …

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Beach No 50: Maroubra (7 January 2018)

Since 2010 I’ve been visiting Sydney’s beaches in alphabetical order. I’ve reached number 50: Maroubra. We’re set for record-breaking heat today. It’s supposed to be in the high 40s in the Western Suburbs. My old schoolmate, Tracey, is visiting from Chicago – and no heat is too much heat for her.  My friend Matthew is coming along too – he’s becoming a regular here at Sundays the Beach with this to be his third (after Little Congwong and Manly). The Maroubra Beach high street, the shops, the reserve behind the beach, the beach itself, and the area between the flags are …

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Beach No 49: Manly – 10 December 2017

Summer has arrived and the beaches beckon. It’s a gorgeous, golden, shimmering day. There’s heat in the sun and cool in the shade. It feels, as it should, like early summer. I meet Aaron, Giancarlo, and Matthew for a late breakfast at Kansas City Shuffle in The Rocks. We eat, drink coffee, talk of politics, and life, and whatever else comes to mind – an enjoyable, engaged, all-in conversation. This was just the sort of thing I missed while I was travelling alone through France – this sort of free-flowing dialogue among people with enough in common to understand one another yet …

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Beach No 48: Malabar – A winter solstice beach (25 June 2017)

In 2014 I heard a story on the radio about ceremonies people create for themselves. A caller described a women’s winter solstice ceremony she had been conducting for years. The Winter Solstice, marking the moment when more light begins to fill your days, is the beginning of a new cycle and a nadir. The caller’s ceremony involved letting go of the past year – which I then sorely needed to do. I had then run my worst turn around the sun to date and was, finally, starting to recover. I’ve missed marking the solstice in 2015 (I was in the northern hemisphere) and …

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